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So as bizzare as that sounds, the Military diet plan popularly known as the 3-day diet, is a quick weight loss program which calls for a strict diet for the first 3 days and then regular eating for the next 4 days. Consequently, people have found to lose 10 pounds in just a week!

But let’s not jump right into it nor run right away from it…It can be completely true or a complete scam!

So, to find out whether you should go for this bizzare and popular diet this guide tries to answer all questions from what exactly the military diet is, to how it works, what to eat, what to avoid, and a 3-day military diet plan!

What Is the Military Diet?

The military diet is a short dietary plan to help quick weight loss by excessively controlling portion sizes for 3 days.

Whether you heard it as the army diet, the navy diet, the ice-cream diet, or simply the military diet, this diet is far more detailed and interesting despite being a short one. Let’s begin with the basics of this diet:

  • It is inexpensive no doubt, because there are no special ingredients or requirements from you for following the military diet.
  • It is a highly restrictive diet because you have to control your intake.
  • It limits portion sizes excessively to make sure that you lose weight quick.
  • It is experientially proven to be one of the fastest weight loss diets.
  • It can be difficult to follow because the main ingredient of this diet is persistence.
  • There is absolutely no kind of exercise required.

With no definite research findings on where the military diet came from, some say it came from the military forces, some say it came from the American heart Association, but irrespective of its source, if you want to lose weight and you want to do it fast then lets fid out if this diet is right for you.

Military Diet Foods

Acceptable Foods

If you start with a military diet, then your next 3 days of food and grocery shopping would look something like this:

  1. Apples
  2. Banana
  3. Black Coffee
  4. Broccoli
  5. Carrots
  6. Eggs
  7. Grapefruit
  8. Greek Yogurt
  9. Green Beans
  10. Hot Dogs
  11. Ice-cream
  12. Meat
  13. Peanut Butter
  14. Saltines
  15. Tea
  16. Tuna

Foods To Avoid

The 3 foods that are a big NO-NO for your next 3 days would be:

  1. Alcohol
  2. Sugar
  3. Milk/Cream (barring ice-cream)

Foods to watch out for

Since the military diet works on the principle –

“If fewer calories enter your fat tissue than leave them, you lose fat”

So, because of this principle and limited research you have to make sure that if you consume the following foods then keep these points in mind:

  1. Bread – Eat only whole wheat bread and only in small quantities
  2. Cheeses – Try to only easy cottage cheese/cheddar cheese in small quantities
  3. Stick to fruits over any kind of fruit juice
  4. Yogurt – Have only Greek varieties

How Does the Military Diet Work?

The main aim of the military diet is to reduce your calorie intake massively. The working of this diet has no relation with the military forces itself, but more with the rigidity and strictness of its rules.

It works on the principle –

“rather than burning more calories, you eat less than what you burn”

The plan below recommends consuming between 1100-1400 calories per day when you begin, for 3 days. Doctors have commented stating that “This diet is also low in fat and really just relies on the lack of calories to help people to shed weight quickly”.

The military diet plan has no proven research benefits yet but what has been proven is that the combinations of food followed in the right kind of 3-day diet plan increase one’s chances of losing weight quick.

The reason behind this is that certain food combinations in itself increase your metabolism and burn more fat. Though this is highly speculative and inferential, the food items in a Military diet food list are those that are highly metabolizing.

This diet is also promoted using the fact that its health benefits are the same as intermittent fasting. But if you look at the 3-day Military diet plan carefully you’ll notice that there is absolutely no fasting involved. Therefore, this claim is absolutely false!

Now that the working and principles behind the diet are clarified, the section deals with an actual 3-day Military diet plan that you can follow.

3-day Military Diet Meal Plan

Here is a 3-day Military diet meal plan you can follow

Day 1

Total – 1400 calories


  • Toast slice with 2 tbsp of peanut butter.
  • Half a grapefruit.
  • Cup of black coffee/tea (not mandatory)


  • Toast slice with half cup of tuna
  • Cup of black coffee/tea (not mandatory)


  • 1 regular serving of meat with green beans
  • Small sized apple
  • Half banana
  • 1 cup of vanilla ice-cream

Day 2

Total – 1200 calories


  • Toast slice with an egg
  • Half banana


  • A hard-boiled egg with 1 cup of cottage cheese
  • Five Saltine crackers


  • Two hot dogs with the bun
  • Half cup of carrots with half cup of broccoli
  • Half banana
  • Half scoop of vanilla ice-cream

Day 3

Total – 110 calories


  • Slice of cheddar cheese
  • 5 saltine crackers
  • Small apple
  • Cup of black coffee/tea (not mandatory)


  • Toast slice with an egg
  • Cup of black coffee/tea (not mandatory)


  • A cup of tuna
  • Half banana
  • 1 cup of vanilla ice-cream

The next 4 days

Before we get to the next 4 days, let me warn you that the first 3 days are going to be extremely tough, it may even make you go angry out of hunger, or as it’s said hangry! But if you really really want to follow this diet and get quick weight loss results then just remember that only if you follow it diligently will you gain your sweet goal of weight loss.

The next 4 days do not have any specific rules. There are no food restrictions, however I’d advise you to still follow the foods list from above for these 4 days too.

The only requirement from these 4 days is that you maintain a calorie intake of 1500 calories per day. This way the burnt fat and reduced calories from the first 3 days will really pay off by the end of the week!

Is the Military Diet Safe?

The military diet is definitely safe for an average person with no health ailments. Because the diet can be completed over a period of 3 days only, there really isn’t much lasting harm it could do.

But it can turn harmful if you tried to follow this diet for a longer period of time. The diet places such a strict limit over your calorie intake that longer durations of military diet put you at risk of nutrient deficiencies.

Not only is the strict calorie limit an issue, but this diet also lets you have hot dogs, saltine crackers, and ice-cream on a regular basis. And over a long period of time, this kind of junk food will definitely cause metabolic issues among many others.

Is the Military Diet Right For Me?

The Military diet is a short and quick diet for quick weight loss, no doubt. But because it is so short and so restrictive in terms of calorie intake and portion sizes it may not be suitable for everyone to follow it.

On a theory basis, losing 10 pounds in a week is easily possible for overweight people who wish to lose weight. But in such cases, you must keep in mind that most of the weight loss will be due to water, not fat.

That being said, if you really want to lose a few pounds quickly, then the Military diet is a good shortcut because its:

  • Cheap
  • Sustainable
  • Quick
  • Short

But then again if you’re looking for a more long-term solution then you should try to match your long-term goals with the benefits of various diets and choose which diet is best for you?

Beginner’s Guide to the Military Diet
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